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Audio/Video/Media Home Network (1 Viewer)

iClickPhotography

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Jeremy
Not sure if this is the best section, but it seemed like the closest one.

Looks like I may be moving forward with some things in our basement much quicker than I anticipated. Wanting to make sure I get the proper cables/wires run before drywall. Here's the setup I have and plans for later...

Current

- System in our living room with a DirecTV HD DVR (receiver, DVD player, etc)
- Bedroom TV with old DirecTV DVR (plan to upgrade to HD TV and receiver)

Future

- Complete system in basement living area (HD projector or flat panel TV, DirecTV HD receiver, surround sound, etc)
- TV and DirecTV receiver in wetbar area
- TV and receiver in workout room
- TV and receiver in office
- Computer (Mac) and wireless router in future office in basement (currently in an upstairs extra bedroom).

I'll be running 2 coax lines to each of these areas in the basement this weekend. Will also run phone and eithernet as well. I'll have a central hub in our utility room where all of these run to.

I'll also be running speaker wires for an unknown system (likely 5.1 - don't have the side walls in this space for a 7.1 system with side speakers) in the basement - likely will be 2 bookcase speakers in the front, center and sub speakers in the front and 2 in the rear. Unsure on placement though.

I want to have the proper networking setup for a future home media system that will manage our recorded shows and movies - should we record something and want to watch it in any room of the house. I gather eithernet takes care of this? Do I need to be running 2 eithernet (Cat6) cables to each future DirecTV box (home media network and internet)?

Sorry, spending time doing research very quickly today. Fire away with tips or further questions.
 

David Willow

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Right now, you cannot share recorded programs from your DirecTV DVR with other receivers in the house. That is about to change (in the next few months). When this happens, you will need just one Cat5 cable to each DVR (and stand alone boxes). Run all of these to a central router that also connects to the internet. With this configuration , you will also be able to watch your recorded shows on your computer (currently in beta). On demand requires this as well. Also, you can use your DVR for media (video, audio, pictures, podcasts, etc) on your computer (using Windows Media or other program).
 

iClickPhotography

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Thanks for the info. After doing some further research - here is what I plan to do...

Have a central location for all DirecTV boxes. I will run from this location to all future TVs...

2 eithernet connections - Cat6 (one for internet, one for audio/video)
1 Cat5e for IR remote ability
HDMI or component (depending on the room, some I don't care about HDMI

In the central location, I'll place my DSL modem and wireless router. I'll make sure to have an outside coax line into that area in the event I switch to cable internet.

I also have an HD antenna and will run this one line into the central location and run extra coax to the rooms I'll want OTA ability.

This should allow me to simply the setup as well as "future proof" myself. I understand that DirecTV is working on one box that will have multiple tuners in it - allowing it to be central box controlling many TVs. This should work perfectly into my plan.

Let me know if I've missed anything.
 

Robert_J

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I'd still run extra CAT-5 because you can use it for media players like the Popcorn Hour. Don't forget to run RG-6 for your sub cable.

-Robert
 

David Willow

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I solve this by using inexpensive hubs. For example, I put a $20 NetGear hub from Walmart in my son's room to connect his Xbox 360, PS2, computer, and his DirecTV receiver. Beats having 4 runs. Works perfectly.
 

David Willow

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A hub splits one connection into many. You plug the cat-5 into the hub, then you can use the ports to plug in additional cat-5 cables.
 

iClickPhotography

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I want to make sure I'm understanding you correctly...

I would plug the cable carrying the internet into a hub. I would also plug the cable carrying the home media network into perhaps the same hub?

And then there would be one cable running to each room connected to that hub - carrying both the internet and the home media network?
 

David Willow

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Your internet and your media network share the same cable.

How do you get internet? I can better explain how to set it up if I know this.

This is how I do it. I have FIOS internet. The FIOS comes into my house to a 4 port (and wireless) router. From there, I have cat-5 running to 4 rooms (my computer room, living room, and 2 bedrooms). In each of the bedrooms and the living room I have hubs that split this single cable into 4. I then plug in all the devices into the 4 - including the computers. The internet is available on all these devices (and most use it in some manner).
 

iClickPhotography

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I have DSL. I have a Linksys wireless router. Both of these items will be in the central location in the basement. From that, to each room will run structured cable (2 coax, 1 Cat6, 1 Cat5e). I need to know if the Cat6 can carry both my internet and home media network (and I can split that out in the room if need be) and then can I use the Cat5e for the IR remote hook-up.
 

Robert_J

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I know it is complete overkill but I like individual cable runs and using a switch instead of a hub. I have gigabit equipment on a gigabit switch and megabit equipment on a megabit switch. The megabit switch is connected to one port of the gigabit switch for internet access.

-Robert
 

David Willow

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You are running both cat6 and cat5???

Pick one (doesn't matter which) and yes, it will carry both internet and your media network.
 

iClickPhotography

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I need Cat6 for the internet/media network (which I now know can carry both on the same line). I need Cat5e for the IR remote - so I can control the DVR box (or whatever else) when it's in a different room.
 

David Willow

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I didn't realize you had to connect the IR to a network.... Wonder if there is a way to connect it your main network. What is the model of your remote?
 

iClickPhotography

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Not selected yet - may not be put in for months yet - doing the project in stages. Just have to future proof it.
htf_images_smilies_smile.gif
 

Robert_J

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A lot of IR relay systems use CAT-5 wiring to send commands. Even though it is using network cables, it isn't actually connected to a network or using internet protocols. Check out the Buffalo or Wired At Home products from Parts Express.

-Robert
 

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